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lence, dashed the sieve full of flour on the table, and putting her arms akimbo, said,
" Well, Miss Packard, if you will spile the puddin, you must bake it yourself.”
I was thunderstruck! A bride, to whom for a week all had submitted as to a queen; from whom commands were favours, and requests privileges! I felt the blood rush to my face, my hands trembled, and fearing to expose my agitation, I quietly laid down the materials I was preparing, and said, with a great effort at calmness,
“Finish this pudding, and bake it for din
I just made out to reach the parlour, when I burst into tears, and sobbed like a child, comforting myself, however, with the idea that I should compose myself and bathe my eyes before Edward came home. But that was not to be. With a young husband's impatience, he had hurried through his business, and thinking to give me a pleasant surprise, stood by my side.
I cannot describe his concern at my situation,
while I, mortified to the heart at having exposed myself in tears for such a trifle, could scarcely explain the cause of my distress. When I did make him understand the nature of the provocation I had received, he grew angry (I had never seen him angry before), and walking with long strides into the kitchen, he dismissed Nancy on the spot.
With a woman's glance I saw the consequences. Nancy laid aside a raw steak, that she was making tender by her passionate treatment, and walked up stairs in high dudgeon, not forgetting to take up the wages which Edward had thrown on the table. Five minutes after, we heard her departing tramp on the stairs. It was no time for crying now.
Little Polly and I had to go to cooking in good earnest My husband turned off the affair, when his temper was cooled, with a very pleasant grace, and as I placed the before-mentioned steak on the gridiron, exclaimed,
“ Haste hither, Eve, with speed; And what thy stores contain bring forth, and pour abundance.
When our dinner was cooked, we formed a procession from the kitchen to the parlour. Edward bore the steak, whistling a march. I followed, laughing, with the pudding, for we had to economize time, and little Polly, enjoying the joke, trudged after with the potatoes.
Still we felt that there was an effort in all this, and when
husband looked at me for the first time alone, at his table, he perceived that the kitchen fire, added to the effects of weeping, had deepened the hue of my complexion beyond the delicacy of beauty, and as I was assisting him to a potato, detected a spot of "smut” (pot-black) on the finger on which he had placed a pearl ring. I blushed deeper crimson; and tears, those trials to young wives, started to my eyes. Edward seemed not to notice it, and I transferred the sable stain to one of my bridal handkerchiefs.
She is not the fairest, although she is fair,
Nothing could be more calm than our even-, ing meal after the excitement of our cook's departure. We felt the happiness of that intercourse where "love is.” It was autumn.The beauty and freshness of summer were in the heavens, and the warmth of winter on our hearth.
I felt no embarrassment in carrying my shining brass tea-kettle into the parlour, and making tea there, which, with blushing importance, I poured out for my husband. He was fusi of the gentle pleasantry of satisfied affection.
Little Polly superintended the toasting iron, that luxury so little known in some places, where forks are destroyed daily in burning one
piece of bread, while the iron toasts three in less time.
My mother was soon apprized of the loss of my cook, and the very next evening "help" came in the form of a gentle, but ignorant-looking girl of eighteen. She was one to whom I would willingly have extended my hand, and given my heart. I dreaded to think that so soft a creature should be visited by the elements “too roughly.” She was however active, and her duties were soon well performed. Sally had been an inmate of my family but six weeks, when one day she came into the parlour, and, colouring very deeply, handed me a letter, which was written as follows.
“SALEM, “Dear Sally, I've got home safe from Calcutta, and reckon that you will be glad to see me, tho' sometimes I aint so sure. I calculate to be in Boston by to-morrow, and shall find you out. If you haven't got another sweetheart I shall want to marry you Sunday night; if you